[Evangelism] Plone and QUALOSS - QUALity in Open Source Software

Graham Perrin G.J.Perrin at bton.ac.uk
Sun Nov 2 19:09:56 UTC 2008

Xavier Heymans wrote:
> … So far, it has been very difficult to establish a link with the OS
> Community on these topics. … I would like to know if we could find some
> "quality leaders" within the Plone and Zope community that could become
> technical contact points to provide feedback to the researchers.

Glancing at the three projects under the Flossquality umbrella, I guess that
some of the people with whom you wish to make links might hesitate, with
thoughts such as these: 

1) Will information that I provide to FLOSSMetrics be communicated
appropriately, effectively and in good time to other relevant projects, in
particular QualOSS and SQO-OSS?

-- underlying wish: duplication of input/effort should be as close as
possible to zero.

2) Can you demonstrate that deliverables of the three projects are being
used effectively? For example, how are SMEs responding to the guides
<http://flossmetrics.org/sections/deliverables> provided by FLOSSMetrics?

-- underlying wish: what's in it for us?

3) Are the conference, journal and workshop papers and books listed at
<http://www.sqo-oss.eu/index_html/research> easily and immediately

-- underlying wishes: hyperlinks, open access (OA).

4) How will the analyses of (say) FLOSSMetrics be superior to the statistics
of (say) Ohloh?

-- underlying assumptions: apples and oranges, statistical discrepancies;

5) After funding for Flossquality projects ends, how long will it be before
another round of surveys and analysis?

-- underlying hope: deliverables, methodologies et cetera from the current
projects should be so forward-looking and adaptable that future
projects/champions will positively wish to pick up the baton.

Your answer to (4) might depend upon quality leaders coming forth from
Plone, Zope and other communities ;)


Focusing on the highlights at 
<http://www.diigo.com/annotated/573bd2866683ab0136353688530ed63f>, in
particular those under the heading 'Standards Compliant' and 'Plays Well
with Others', I take the opinion that playing well is a most critical

A system may be compliant, powerful and wildly popular; but if it can not
_not_ easily play well with others, I'll avoid it. 

Why avoid?

<http://www.diigo.com/list/Grahamperrin/software-halloween-morass> leads to
a blog entry about 'The Conversation Prism' that visualises, in varying
degrees of complexity, an impressive but dizzying (alarming?) range of
social media.

I have no desire to visualise the 300+ recognised content management
systems, nor to substract (from visualisations of social media and/or CMS)
the products/services that are not open source. 

I do take pleasure in knowing that Plone already has, or soon will have, the
USPs/common selling points that people find appealing in other products.

Because we can do so much with Plone -- with certainty -- I'll _avoid_
novelties or popularities that require proliferation (not always with the
same certainty).


Visually, I think of (Python -- Zope -- Plone core -- collective/add-ons) as
being very rounded and cohesive. 

(Might Plone have fewer add-ons/extensions than other content management
systems? Might statistical analyses of core and collective code bases
suggest innovation/development around Plone is less than around other
products? I have no idea but 

Visually, my recollection of Drupal was blockiness. LAMP/MAMP were four
quadrants with less cohesion, less of a big picture. More maintenance. YMMV. 

A key distinction: 

-- as in the past I added user-requested functionality to Drupal, so it
'felt' (to me) more sprawling

-- as more recently I add user-requested add-on products to Plone, so it
feels more rounded. Playing well :)


Veering off-topic from Plone, but on the subject of EU/European
Commission-supported initiatives, the following survey draws my attention: 


> EU survey on Internet-based collaboration in support of the research
> process

Does that survey have any relation to Flossquality work in progress?

Best regards

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